Dean Prepares to be a Programmer!
Dean, a 10-year-old incoming 5th grader living in Arkansas, absolutely loves performing hands-on activities and creating his own projects! He plans to put these skills to use by becoming either an engineer or a computer programmer when he grows up. In his free time, you can find Dean drawing, coding, or even making stop-motion animations with his LEGOs!
Dean’s mom, Amanda, is “very proud of Dean with all that he has learned and accomplished through Tynker.” We can see why Amanda is so proud – not only has Dean been featured in Tynker, but he was also a weekly winner in Tynker’s Summer 2017 Code-A-Thon! These two accomplishments are no small feat in the Tynker community! We interviewed Dean to see exactly how he does it.
How did you get introduced to coding and Tynker? I really can’t remember how I got introduced to Tynker, but I’ve already been coding for over a year.
How did you learn to use Tynker when you were first starting out? I experimented with the blocks and eventually I learned how to do some pretty cool stuff with them. The debugger is definitely one of my favorite tutorials.
How do you get inspiration for your projects? I usually look in the featured projects sections for ideas or just look around the house, and then I’ll get inspiration to do something!
What is your favorite project you’ve made so far? My favorite project is the Sketch Pad. I like how I gave it an assortment of colors to choose from, and you can change the size of the pen to as big or as small as you want. There’s also a section to test your colors. There are bright colors, dark colors, and medium colors.
How did you feel when you found out your project had been featured? I felt amazed and surprised!
How have your coding skills improved ever since you started using Tynker? They’ve improved greatly! Now I know how to use variables, how to break out of loops, and how to continue to the top of the loop using the “continue” block inside of an “if” statement.
Why do you like to code? I like to code for a couple reasons: First, it’s entertaining. Second, I get to make games that I want to play but don’t already exist.
“Spring with Flying Bird“
Do you think other kids should try coding? Yes, they can create projects and code what their imagination says to code.
What advice would you give to kids starting out with Tynker? Just experiment with the code blocks or take the tutorials. But if you choose to experiment with the code blocks, I suggest starting with the first section and working through them in order.
We talked to Dean’s mother, Amanda, to get her opinion on Dean’s coding experience. “One benefit is that coding gives him a creative outlet beyond his art and stop-motion. As far as skills go, it has helped him learn how to let go of some of his perfectionism.”
Amanda included an insightful observation she noticed with Dean. “He now understands that it is okay if his project is not perfect the first time; bugs and errors can be fixed. And I think that has carried over into him being more patient with himself in the creative process of his art and stop-motion videos.” Amanda is certain that Dean’s improved patience will be beneficial to him for the rest of his life.
Incredibly well-said, Amanda! It’s great to discover how Dean has grown both personally and intellectually since he started using Tynker. Thank you for chatting with us – we can’t wait to see what you create next, Dean!